The NHS Spitfire will once more take to the skies above the UK today, flying over hospitals across England and Wales in tribute to the NHS and key workers for their hard work during the pandemic. The Aircraft Restoration Company, a firm which restores vintage aircraft, will fly the plane today.
Those looking up will be able to see the message ‘THANK U NHS’ emblazoned across the underside of its wings.
The blue Spitfire PL983 ‘L’ had been flown every Thursday during lockdown to thank key workers.
Now, it is being flown over hospitals across the country – and is being covered with the names of 80,000 NHS heroes, family members, neighbours and friends nominated by members of the public.
Brits are being offered the opportunity to nominate the name of a loved one to be handwritten onto the Aircraft Restoration Company’s plane in aid of NHS Charities together.
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“After such positive response we decided to leave the message painted on the Spitfire for the rest of the flying season, this is where the idea to hand write the names of the nation’s loved ones onto the aircraft to raise money for the NHS Charities Together began.”
However if the plane isn’t flying over your area don’t worry, there are more flights planned in the coming weeks.
An Aircraft Restoration Company spokesperson said: “We hope to see as many of you as possible throughout the duration of this project and will be flying a number of routes across different parts of the nation throughout the summer.
“If we are not coming to skies near you on this occasion then please don’t be disheartened as we will hopefully be getting a little closer on a later route.”
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Where NHS Spitfire will fly over today?
The plane will take off from Duxford Airfield at 10am, before making its way to Kettering General Hospital, Danetre Hospital and Hospital of St Cross.
Birmingham, Wolverhampton, Hereford, Shrewsbury and Gloucester will also be on the route today.
After a short break at Cotswold Airport, the NHS Spitfire will once more take to the skies flying over Great Western Hospital, Chippenham and Trowbridge community hospitals and Bath, before heading across to Wales.
The full route is below, with timings for each location. However, anyone looking to the skies should bear in mind weather can alter these timings.
NHS Spitfire Route (Tuesday, August 18 2020) Updated route:
10.00am – Duxford Airfield (Take-off)
10.15am – Kettering General Hospital NHS
10.22am – Danetre Hospital NHS – Daventry
10.26am – Hospital of St Cross NHS, Rugby
10.33am – University Hospital Coventry & Warwickshire NHS
10.40am – Queen Elizabeth Hospital NHS, Birmingham
10.45am – New Cross Hospital NHS, Wolverhampton
10.51am – The Princess Royal Hospital NHS, Telford
10.55am – The Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust
11.02am – Ludlow Community Hospital NHS
11.10am – Hereford County Hospital NHS
11.17am – Worcester Royal Hospital NHS
11.25am – Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust – Cheltenham
11.30am – Gloucester Royal Hospital NHS
11.35am – Cotswold Airport, Kemble (Land)
2.00pm – Cotswold Airport, Kemble (Take-off)
2.05pm – Great Western Hospital NHS – Swindon
2.12pm – Chippenham Community Hospital NHS
2.16pm – Trowbridge Community Hospital NHS
2.20pm – Royal United Hospitals Bath NHS Foundation Trust
2.25pm – Southmead Hospital – North Bristol NHS Trust
2.27pm – Bristol Royal Infirmary NHS
2.38pm – Yeovil District Hospital NHS
2.45pm – Musgrove Park Hospital NHS – Taunton
2.53pm – Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital NHS – Wonford
3.05pm – North Devon District Hospital NHS – Barnstaple
3.18pm – Morriston Hospital NHS – Swansea
3.30pm – University Hospital of Wales NHS – Cardiff
3.35pm – Royal Gwent Hospital NHS – Newport
3.40pm – Chepstow Community Hospital NHS
3.50pm – Cotswold Airport, Kemble (Land)
5.00pm – Great Western Hospital NHS – Swindon – on the way back to Duxford